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School of Library and Information Science 2001-2003 Academic Online Bulletin Table of Contents

 

 

School of Library and
Information Science
2001-2003
Academic Bulletin

http://www.slis.indiana.edu/
Wells Library 011
1320 E. Tenth Street  
Bloomington, IN 47405-3907
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Toll Free (888) 355-7547
Contact SLIS

http://www.slis.iupui.edu
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Information Science

Introduction
Goals
Objectives
Admission to the Program

Ph.D. Program Requirements
Course Credits
Program of Studies
Qualifying Examination
Dissertation
SLIS Minor
SLIS Financial Support for Doctoral Students

Introduction

The SLIS doctoral program emphasizes a research orientation, focused on advancing and disseminating both basic and applied knowledge about the design, use, management, and evaluation of information systems in all segments of society. The interdisciplinary approach brings together perspectives from information science and the behavioral sciences with appropriate research methodologies. The Ph.D. program prepares the next generation of scholars in the field to conduct research of the highest quality. As a r esult, emphasis is placed on research experience, public discussion and dissemination of research findings, and the development of methodological skills and theoretical understanding.

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Goals of the Ph.D. Program

The school has identified the following goals for the Doctor of Philosophy in Information Science:

  1. To promote a common understanding of the research process and what constitutes scholarly research.
  2. To prepare scholars who are able to identify and conceptualize significant research problems.
  3. To train scholars who are able to produce relevant research and who have the overall potential for contributing new knowledge to the field.
  4. To prepare students for professional roles as researchers, teachers, and consultants in both academic and nonacademic settings.

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Objectives for Students in the Ph.D. Program

By completion of their Ph.D. program, doctoral students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate their ability to generate original research that meets the scholarly standards of the field.
  2. Communicate the findings of their work, orally and in writing, in a clear, convincing fashion to other scholars in this and related disciplines.

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Admission to the Program

Admission to the doctoral program is highly competitive. Application for the Ph.D. program is made through the School of Library and Information Science at Bloomington. Information about application procedures and admission criteria are to be found in the section of this bulletin entitled "Admission to Graduate Programs."

Students who have graduated with a bachelor's or master's degree in any discipline may apply for admission to the SLIS doctoral program. Students who are admitted and have a master's degree in a field of study closely related to information science from a recognized international program, or the equivalent, can be enrolled in the doctoral program and can transfer up to 30 credit hours of recognized course work. The student must submit official transcripts as proof of degree completion. If a student is adm itted who has an interest in information science but does not possess an appropriate graduate degree, the student will initially be enrolled in one of the master's degree programs. After 12 months, the student's performance will be reviewed by the Ph.D. S teering Committee, and, if appropriate, the student's status will be changed to reflect admission to the doctoral program.

The formal requirements for admission include:

  • A completed Indiana University Graduate Application for Admission (available from SLIS).
  • A bachelor's degree from an accredited university or college. Submit transcripts for all course work taken and degrees completed.
  • Record of academic accomplishment. An applicant must have an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale) and a minimum grade point average of 3.5 (on a 4.0 scale) in any previous graduate course work. An international applicant' s grade point average will be calculated on the basis of equivalency from universities that use a different scale.
  • Personal statement. The applicant must submit a 500-word statement of professional goals that reflects a commitment to teaching and/or research.
  • Three letters of recommendation should come from persons in the professional and academic communities who can address the applicant's scholarly and analytical abilities and potential for doctoral study.
  • Scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Applicants must submit a recent score (within three years of application) on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General (aptitude) Test as part of their admission credentials. Scores on all three sec tions (verbal, quantitative, and analytical) will be considered. While a minimum of 1500 is required for an application to be processed further, we expect higher scores from successful applicants. International students who find it impossible to submit GR E scores may petition to have this requirement waived.
  • A TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score above 600 is required for applicants whose native language is not English. In addition, university policy provides that all international students be retested on English language abilities upon arr ival at Indiana University.
  • Demonstrable potential for excellence in conducting research. Success in a doctoral program requires such characteristics as the ability to identify and conceptualize significant research problems, the ability to be insightful and express ideas clearl y, and overall potential for contributing new knowledge to the discipline.

Applications from international students must be reviewed by the Indiana University Office of International Admissions before their review by the SLIS Doctoral Admissions Committee.

SLIS encourages doctoral applicants to provide the school with the most appropriate evidence regarding each of the admission criteria. GRE scores and college transcripts are usually sufficient to demonstrate capability of working with abstract concepts in doctoral-level courses and research. The essay portion of the application provides indication of the applicant's commitment to research and to the field of information science and attracts the attention of relevant faculty to the application. It is recom mended that each applicant submit a sample or summary of previous work that is relevant to the admission criteria, such as academic papers or work-related projects.

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Ph.D. Program Requirements

Full instructions for the doctoral program are presented in the SLIS Doctoral Program Handbook. The following outline summarizes these requirements.

Course Credits

Each doctoral student at Indiana University is required to complete at least 90 credit hours of an advanced course of study. Up to 30 credit hours earned in a master's or specialist degree program may be transferred to the doctoral program, provided they meet time limit requirements and are relevant to the student's doctoral area of concentration. Of the 90 credit hours, 60 must be taken at the Bloomington or Indianapolis campus (or both) of Indiana University.

All course work, except dissertation credits, must be completed within seven years of matriculation. Students must select at least one minor subject area from those areas of graduate study outside of SLIS that have been approved by the University Graduate School. The determination of minimum requirements and examination procedures (if any) for the minor is entirely at the discretion of the minor department or program.

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Program of Studies

An advisory committee of at least three faculty members oversees the student's program of studies, annual progress reports (portfolio), and preparation for the qualifying examination. At least two members of the committee, including the chair, must be mem bers of the University Graduate School faculty. Two advisory committee members must be from SLIS and one from the student's minor area.

Within the 90 credit hours of the program, the student must taken 13 credit hours of required SLIS research seminars, 9 credit hours of research skills and statistics (which may be from another IU department), at least 24 credit hours that represent a maj or area within information science, and 12 to 15 credit hours that represent an outside minor area. The dissertation normally equals 15 hours of deferred thesis credit.

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Qualifying Examination

The qualifying examination provides students an opportunity to investigate an area in depth, to write a lengthy paper summarizing their findings, and to defend their work publicly before their peers and the full faculty. Upon passing the qualifying exam, the student is nominated to candidacy. Admission to candidacy will not be awarded, however, until all required course work has been completed and/or validated.

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The Dissertation

A research committee of at least four faculty members guides the student through the dissertation research, writing, and final oral defense. The committee members must all be University Graduate School faculty, with the chair and at least one other member being full members. Three research committee members must be from SLIS and one from the student's minor area.

After admission to candidacy, doctoral students must register for at least one credit hour each semester (excluding summer sessions) in order to maintain active student status. The dissertation must be completed and successfully defended within seven year s of passing the oral qualifying examination.

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SLIS Minor

The School of Library and Information Science offers an outside minor for doctoral students in other fields in accord with the regulations of the University Graduate School. Students usually complete a minimum of 12 hours of graduate credit in fulfilling this option. Inquires should be addressed to the director of the SLIS doctoral program.

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SLIS Financial Support for Doctoral Students

There are a variety of financial aid sources for doctoral students, including fellowships awarded by the university to outstanding graduate students, and government-funded awards under the Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) program. Sch olarships established by alumni and supporters contribute to Ph.D. departmental aid packages (for example, the Margaret Griffin Coffin Scholarship and the Sarah Reed Scholarship). Qualified Ph.D. students may apply for the Clayton A. Shepherd Scholarship. SLIS also provides support to Ph.D. students in the form of graduate assistantships and other kinds of direct aid. Teaching opportunities are often available. International students are required by the University Graduate School to demonstrate financial independence before being admitted to the program. Questions should be directed to the director of the SLIS Doctoral Program

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